The Stand

GOP supports slashing Medicaid, Medicare

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UPDATE (Oct. 26, 2017) — In a dramatic vote this morning, the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives narrowly approved a budget measure that calls for cuts of $1 trillion from Medicaid and $550 billion from Medicare, as well as major cuts to education and other services. The measure was necessary to allow Republicans in the Senate to avoid a Democratic filibuster of their legislation to target major tax cuts to corporations and America’s richest families.

Although 20 Republicans sided with Democrats in opposing the budget measure, all four Republican members of Congress from Washington state voted “yes.” They are Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Jaime Herrera Beutler, Dave Reichert, and Dan Newhouse. Every Democratic House member from Washington (and the rest of the country) voted “no.”

Prior to today’s vote, Democrats called out the hypocrisy of self-proclaimed “fiscal conservatives” in the Republican Party backing a budget plan that would drive up the national debt. It is estimated that the major tax cuts will add an estimated $1.5 trillion to the national deficit over the next decade.

“Republicans are always telling us how much they care about the deficit. But when it comes to giving their beloved tax cuts to their billionaire friends, they suddenly develop a convenient case of amnesia,” Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said. “They say, ‘What deficit? Don’t worry, these tax breaks will pay for themselves.’”

Advocates for working families and health care condemned the Republican budget plan.

“It is no secret why Republican elites are so eager to destroy programs that America’s working families rely on, while making their wealthy donors richer,” wrote Nancy Altman of Social Security Works. “For them, it is a twofer: They hate these programs that put the lie to their false claim that government is the problem. Medicare and Medicaid are shining examples of all of us working together through our government to solve problems. By giving enormous tax cuts to the wealthy, paid for by cuts to these vital programs, they put more money in the pockets of their donors. What will the donors do with the money? Donate to Republican politicians to keep them in power.”


WASHINGTON, D.C. (Oct. 25, 2017) — To pave the way for massive tax cuts targeted to corporations and America’s wealthiest people, Senate Republicans passed a budget resolution last week on a 51-49 vote that calls for cuts of $1 trillion from Medicaid and $550 billion from Medicare, as well as major cuts to education and other services. The Republican-controlled House is expected to vote on this budget as soon as Thursday.

These are the same dramatic cuts to Medicaid and Medicare that were part of the failed legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Their inclusion in the budget resolution is necessary so the Trump tax giveaway will require only a simple majority in the Senate, as opposed to the 60 votes necessary to overcome a Democratic filibuster.

URGENT CALL TO ACTION — Please take a few minutes to call your U.S. Representative — especially if it’s one of the Republicans — and tell them to vote NO on the budget resolution. Tell them DON’T steal trillions from critical health care programs that working families have paid for and rely upon just to pay for tax cuts for corporations and the rich:

1st CD — Suzan DelBene (D) — 202-225-6311
2nd CD — Rick Larsen (D) — 202-225-2605
3rd CD — Jaime Herrera Beutler (R) — 202-225-3536
4th CD — Dan Newhouse (R) — 202-225-5816
5th CD — Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R) — 202-225-2006
6th CD — Derek Kilmer (D) — 202-225-5916
7th CD — Pramila Jayapal (D) — 202-225-3106
8th CD — Dave Reichert (R) — 202-225-7761
9th CD — Adam Smith (D) — 202-225-8901
10th CD — Denny Heck (D) — 202-225-9740

Several House Republicans have said they don’t like this budget for one reason or another, but they intend to vote for it anyway because of pressure from the White House to approve Trump’s tax giveaway by year’s end. The necessary first step is to ram through this budget that slashes Medicare and Medicaid to finance those tax cuts.

“I told him, Mr. President, this budget stinks,” said Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), but he has pledged to vote for it anyway. “We are not going to miss the opportunity to make tax reform. I think this is going to pass pretty easily. We need the win.”

And that is what is driving this massive attack on Medicare and Medicaid funding. Republicans in Congress desperately want a political “win” to appease restless donors frustrated with GOP dysfunction and lack of effectiveness.

“It is no secret why Republican elites are so eager to destroy programs that America’s working families rely on, while making their wealthy donors richer,” writes Nancy Altman of Social Security Works. “For them, it is a twofer: They hate these programs that put the lie to their false claim that government is the problem. Medicare and Medicaid are shining examples of all of us working together through our government to solve problems. By giving enormous tax cuts to the wealthy, paid for by cuts to these vital programs, they put more money in the pockets of their donors. What will the donors do with the money? Donate to Republican politicians to keep them in power.”

Please call your U.S. Representative at the numbers listed above and urge them to vote NO on the budget resolution.

Short URL: http://www.thestand.org/?p=61374

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